Anyone who knows me also knows that I love squirrels! I might even be considered something of a squirrel whisperer. Here’s a video of me interacting with a very tame squirrel at the park a few years ago.
And here’s another one of me getting the opportunity to pet this wild squirrel!
But whether or not you have a fondness for squirrels, these cute little furry rodents also happen to be quintessentially associated with fall, the time when you can see them gathering and burying nuts all over the place. Squirrel themed nail art has been a long time coming for me, but I’m glad that I waited until my skills improved some more so that I could do the animal some justice.
Let’s start with the nail polish palette:
Left to right: I’ll Take the Cake! by OPI, I Think I Cayenne by Sephora by OPI, Espresso Your Style! by OPI, and Rich Gold by Sephora + Pantone Universe Jewel Dust Nail Lacquer.
For the acorns and the squirrel, I used acrylic paint by craft smart.
Acrylic paint by craft smart in Black, Dark Grey, White, Golden Brown, and Brown.
I almost never use sheer polishes, but I wanted a neutral looking background for everything. I’ll Take the Cake! has a nice shimmer to it while providing a hint of color to smooth things out.
You can get a gorgeous nude shimmery mani from I’ll Take the Cake! by OPI.
I planned to paint a squirrel head on my ring finger, but I wanted a fall colored gradient on the tips of my other nails. Using a sponge, I applied one color at a time.
In order for the acorns to show up clearly, I had to start with my darkest color first. This rich brown is Espresso Your Style! from OPI.
I continued to sponge on I Think I Cayenne from Sephora by OPI, a beautiful russet color, over the dark brown.
The last layer of the gradient was Rich Gold from Sephora + Pantone Universe. The glitter is holographic when it catches the light, so the picture really doesn’t do it justice.
The gradient on its own makes for a lovely fall manicure, as it looks like piles of autumn leaves swirling in the wind. I was tempted to leave it alone, but I wanted my squirrel to have some nuts!
The rest of this manicure was done with acrylic paint so I could clean my brushes easily.
The acorns were pretty simple to do. I used Brown to create the bottom half of the acorn, swiped Golden Brown across the top and added a stem to the hat of the nut, lightly applied a cross hatch pattern across the top with Brown, and finished by outlining the major sections of the image with Black.
How to paint an acorn.
I couldn’t afford to take so many pictures while painting the squirrel because I was blending colors together to get different shades and had limited time to use the paint before it dried. To get the general shape, I painted an outline of the head with Dark Grey and tweaked the shading from there.
Looks like an locked item from a video game! The squirrel is but a shade of itself.
Blend different amounts of brown and grey, brown and black, and white and grey to get the shading right on the face and ears. I outlined the head with a combination of grey and black to give my guy a softer look.
I get super happy whenever I see that cute face on my nail!
Operation Squirrel Manicure accomplished! Hope you have all your nuts gathered and accounted for over the upcoming holidays! Happy polishing!